2013 Report on the Voice Over Industry

Embracing Change

Report On The Voice-Over Industry

In order to thrive in a changing industry, one must adapt and participate in the manner that is required of them to prosper. Should an individual fail to comply with the mainstream philosophy and the requirements therein, they forfeit their position amongst their peers in the new order.

Freelance and professional voice-over talent that work online have already made the first leap, have acknowledged the current state of the industry and the accepted practices for receiving work and promoting their services to a global audience.

Because you are reading this document, you may count yourself among the enlightened that have become accustomed to digital technology and have embraced the Internet and its many purposes. This white paper will give you an exciting forecast of where the industry is going and how you can stay on top of it.

Enabling the Digital Revolution

We are certainly in the midst of the digital revolution. Some say we are still in its infancy. This revolution can be characterized by the wide-spread adoption of hardware devices, software programs and apps and digital content.

The demand for high quality content, commonly referred to as digital media, has never been higher. Consider how each of us has changed our daily behavior, just in the last couple of years. All media is now "digital media."

Freelancing on the Internet

With the advent of the Internet, opportunities of global proportion have descended on business professionals, including those in the voice-over industry. Using this new medium, talent are able to communicate, audition, and deliver their audio to employers at the speed of their technical capabilities and the Internet.

Work opportunities are achieved in one of two ways online. Either employers contact talent directly from their personal business sites or they select from a pool of talent using a voice-over service provider or marketplace.

Transforming the Value Chain

Before the Internet, mobile devices and portable audio recording devices, there was the age of the walk-in audition. This was followed by telephone casting, CDs being sent in the mail, and employer referrals. These activities were for the most part engaged in by agencies representing talent, however, many entrepreneurs began to champion their own careers in addition to the efforts of their representation and union affiliations, resulting in the prominent rise of the freelance professional.

Though these methods are not entirely obsolete, the environment and processes for auditioning talent has changed as have the enhanced parameters defined by employers and the technical knowledge and self-representative capabilities possessed by individual voice-over talent.

Nowadays, the majority of the voice-over work is procured online. Again, a prospective employer is searching Google or ultimately ending up at an online marketplace such as Voices.com. The employer’s hiring process tends to start and end online.

Managing Time & Costs

Collapsing Time

One of the primary reasons that employers, be they creative producers, advertising agencies, marketing executives or video editors, choose Voices.com is because of extremely tight time constraints. Simply put, they can’t find a voice talent using their traditional means, so they start to explore.

The value of an online marketplace lies in the single point of solicitation. In effect, the client can post their job, receive proposals, quotes and most importantly auditions from a variety of talent in a matter of minutes, if not hours. The "wow" factor is a common reaction when clients realize that by working through Voices.com, they can cut their production timelines by as much as 80%. Projects are often completed within 24-48 hours. (1)

Controlling Costs

The other reason why clients choose Voices.com is the cost savings. To be clear, the savings come from the elimination of administrative burdens, travel, studio time, day rates for in-person casting sessions and engineering time. The amount earned by the Voices.com talent has remained the same. Session fees or project fees have certainly remained competitive. In fact, at Voices.com, the average fee per job has increased by 10% in the last year. (2)

Recognizing the Opportunity

Facing the Challenge

The challenge for media and entertainment companies is not in the distribution. For the last 100 years, the distribution system has been working well. Traditional radio and television stations, movie studios and distribution partners are all examples of that system in effect. Presently, mobile platforms, social networks and more broadly, the Internet serve as the distribution system.

The fundamental problem facing the media and entertainment industry is creating high quality content at scale. This is the friction point. Digital media content creation is the most efficient part of the process and production companies can’t keep up with the demand to create digital media, which consists of mixing audio, video, images and text into a compelling story.

Recognizing the Opportunity

Having stated the challenge, this also highlights the opportunity at hand. In the coming pages, six vertical markets will be described revealing what they are, how fast the market is growing and how big the market is currently. All the statistics will be sourced when appropriate.

People use smartphones, tablets, laptops, desktops, e-readers, game consoles, connected TVs and set-top boxes to access video and other content, and they expect that content to flow seamlessly across devices and media platforms. This presents opportunities for brand marketers and content owners that understand how to deliver to increasingly demanding customers. (3)



  1. Voices.com’s Quarterly "Client Experience Report"
  2. Voices.com’s Quarterly "Client Experience Report"
  3. eMarket’s Top Digital Trends